Sunday, December 25, 2016

To This End Was He Was Born

We had a beautiful Christmas service last Sunday, one that left me filled with the spirit of Christ's birth. I was grateful when the poem shared below came to me rather quickly on Saturday morning, as I had been running behind all week, and it was meant to conclude the program. Happily, I was able to read the completed poem as planned, proving to me once more that prayer works! I hope it honors the Savior as much as I honor Him, on Christmas Day and always.

To This End Was He Born
©2015 Susan Noyes Anderson

A child was given to the world
one perfect, starlit night.
He came to bless us with His truth
and fill our souls with light.
He was the Son of God and Mary,
human yet divine,
the only One who had the pow’r
to take your sins and mine.

The angels heralded His birth;
the very skies took part,
and shepherds ventured from their flocks
to offer Christ their heart.
Even the Magi worshipped Him,
arriving from afar
to celebrate the newborn King
beneath that guiding star.

His mission was a saving one.
Christ taught us how to live.
No sacrifice too great, He offered
all He had to give.
His gifts were many. When a child,
He spake as if a man.
The people wondered at the boy
but did not understand.

Though Jesus could not fully know
the path His feet would trod,
He soon began to sense His mission
as the Son of God.
He grew in strength and wisdom as
His purpose was defined.
He was the Father’s firstborn Son,
the Savior of mankind.

His ministry began with words:
three words, “Come, follow me.”
He chose apostles, simple men,
to share His company.
Disciples followed Christ as well,
inspired by His stories.
Beside Him, they learned much about
God’s kingdom and its glories.

Along the way, from place to place,
Christ healed, and saved, and blessed.
The blind could see; the lame could walk;
the suffering soul found rest.
Even the dead took up their lives,
if Jesus willed it so.
“Who is this man?” the people asked,
“and whither does He go?”

“I go before thy face,” said He.
“Hear me, and heed my voice.
Who chooses to obey my words
hath reason to rejoice.”
The righteous loved His goodness, but
the wicked feared his power.
They yearned to steal His life and
plotted evil, hour-by-hour.

When Jesus knew the end was nigh,
He gathered up His men
and gave them a last supper…
His way to say amen
to all that He had taught them.
Later, He brake the bread
and offered up the wine
as blood and body in His stead.

“One of ye shall betray me, one
deny me,” Jesus said.
Judas revealed Him with a kiss;
Peter, in panic, fled.
Early, entreated by their Master
a close watch to keep;
Peter, James, and John failed Christ
by falling fast asleep.

But Jesus knew the task was His
and bore the weight alone
of every sin and grief and sorrow
all the world could own.
He bore it until blood escaped
from every sacred pore;
and when they raised Him on the cross,
He chose to suffer more.

He chose to suffer, for the power
was His to end it all;
but He was born to rescue us,
to save us from the Fall.
“Here am I, send me,” He said,
so long and long ago.
Jesus knew well the sacrifice
required here below.

Christ gave His life so willingly,
‘midst earthly judges’ scorn.
In agony, He bled and hung;
for us, His flesh was torn.
For us, His life was forfeited.
He died, that we might live;
and ere He gave His body up,
pled, “Father, please forgive.”

He begged forgiveness for us all.
As shepherds guard their sheep,
our Savior and Redeemer gave
His life, our souls to keep.
And when He took it up again,
the promise was fulfilled.
The Son of God, the Son of Man,
had done as Father willed.

A newborn baby in a stall,
a gentle mother’s heart.
Two fathers, one on earth and one
in heaven, from the start.
Animals and angels, shepherds,
wise men from afar…
all beheld the baby Jesus,
born beneath a star.

The brightest star in all the heavens…
How else could it be?…
The Light of Christ is brilliant.
May it shine through you and me.
On this and every Christmas Day,
the gift He seeks is clear:
that we receive His gift to us
and keep it through the year.

Our love for Him is manifest
in how we choose to live…
in loving one another;
in striving to forgive;
in honoring His sacrifice
by offering our own;
in doing what we must to kneel,
one day, before His throne.

To this end was He born; for this
cause came He to the earth.
Rejoice! Rejoice! And sing Noel
for our dear Savior’s birth.
Hosannah in the highest…Peace
on earth, good will to men.
Let every soul sing praise to Him
forevermore. Amen.


For more Christmas here.